Maheshwar, a small town on the banks of the Narmada river in Madhya Pradesh, is a one-stop destination for a traveller who wants to indulge in everything at once; beautiful landscape, amazing handlooms, temples that tell the tales of Maheswar’s history, serenity and places to click 10,000 selfies at. Most importantly, one can have the much-needed peace break from the congestion of a city.
In Maheshwar, there’s one thing that’ll directly connect us with History – Forts. Forts are not only witnesses of great historical events but also instruments of making History tangible. For instance, all the carvings you feel with your fingers on the walls of these forts, voice the culture that went behind materialising them.
One such fort every traveller must visit is the Ahilyabai Holkar Fort in Maheshwar. The fort has a very interesting tale of how King Kartavirya Arjuna defeated Ravana is enlivened in this Fort through 11 lamps even today.
King Kartavirya Arjuna, who is also known as King Shastrarjun, had 500 fives. The mighty King’s wives had once wanted to picnic at the riverside. The wives expressed the desire to enjoy in a vast area. Granting their request, the King, who had a thousand hands, stopped the river water flow in order to create a large space for his wives.
While the wives enjoyed, Ravana happened to be flying over the area on Pushpak Viman. On seeing the dried up river bed, he decided to build a Shivling out of the river bed’s mud and pray right there.
Meanwhile, the King’s wives had finished picnicking. The King subsequently released the river water from his hands. Ravana, who was praying at that time, was devastated to witness the destruction of his prayers and the Shivling.
He found the King and challenged him, only to be faced by the latter’s mighty hands. The King pinned Ravana down, put 10 lamps on his head and one in his hand, tied him up and dragged him into his fort. He then tied Ravana to his son’s cradle. Ravana remained captive and was rescued later.
Therefore, 11 lamps are still lighted daily at the Fort to mark the graceful victory of the King over Ravana.
Besides this rich historical heritage, the Fort holds a special attraction for Bollywood filmmakers. A couple of films’ sequences have been shot here.
Apart from the magnificence of the fort, the ghat at the Maheshwar fort is rather picturesque. It will engulf you in its serenity.
Maheshwar also boasts of the saris woven here. They are called Maheshwari saris.
Queen Ahilyabai had brought weavers from Surat to prepare fabric for the royalty. She designed a saree which had motifs drawn from the local architecture and a striped Pallu. Theis unique sari subsequently grew famous as the Maheshwari sari.
One noteworthy thing about Maheshwar is that it has the strength of women entrenched in it, the greatest example being Rani Ahilyabai Holkar. The naming of the fort after her and her unique designing skills that made a kind of fabric popular, speaks volumes about the strong character that she had.
Saris, architecture and history aside, you cannot return without visiting one of these beautiful temples in Maheshwar. It is believed that more than 100 temples have located here have stories to tell about Maheshwar.
If you are a devotee of Lord Shiva, you’ve got to bow down in respect in this temple that is located in the Fort premises.
Another temple that is dedicated to Lord Shiva, Siddhanath temple is built in the intricate Brahmin style of architecture. Spectacular, isn’t it?
The God of water is worshipped at this temple which sits at the bank of Narmada river.
Well, we cannot wait to check this place out. It’s not only a treat for History lovers but also for Bollywood freaks! Maheshwar is definitely an all-in-one destination for families. Why don’t you check out more details about Maheshwar on www.mptourism.com?
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